We recently wrapped up our Outdoor Education Month—one of the most exciting, interactive and adventurous months of education at Doulos Discovery School. It’s also a month in which many of our classrooms are empty (besides the occasional lizard that finds its way in) because our students are out in nature putting their learning to use; experiencing God’s creation in a hands-on, guided environments.
Matt Brown, our Expedition Specialist (and All-Around Swell Guy) gives us a sneak peek at what OED Month is all about.
[For those of you who just want to see photos of our precious students learning about God in His very creation, skip down to the PHOTO GALLERY at bottom.]
Here’s Matt Brown on some of the nitty gritty behind our Outdoor Education Month planning, prep, and production…
Outdoor education month is a very unique experience that we offer to our students. As the coordinator of all these trips, it can be easy to get caught up in the details—the planning, funding, food, substitute teachers, any number of things—and forget what a special opportunity it is to offer these experience to our students. Time and again we have been able to challenge, educate and grow deeper relationships with our students through exploring and challenging them in the great outdoors.
Highlights & Celebrations
This year some of the highlights include further improving our execution of all of high school and middle school going on their respective outdoor education trips, students leading and taking ownership of their own outdoor trips, and reducing the stress on finding substitutes.
Proudly, we continue to increase our outdoor supplies and tools such as doubling the amount of backpacking packs we have, as well as utilizing walkie talkies to further communication on the trails and increase safety.
Introducing new trips such as whitewater rafting, service in the community, and student planned and lead trips has deepened bonds with students and helped develop tools to overcome fears and challenges. It’s through applying these skills that aren’t easily learned to every day situations that we can teach them to persevere and be servant leaders, brave and so many other characteristics.
We are always looking to improve on previous years’ trips and the specific educational content while outdoors is one of our main areas of focus, along with clearly outlining and planning for future Outdoor Education seasons. In doing this we can minimize the learning period for future student leaders, staff and expedition specialists as much as possible and continue to facilitate safe, fun, and educational outdoor ed experiences for our kids.
Another goal we have looking beyond continually improving our students’ experience and fostering a love for the outdoors, is on supply and gear. We take dozens of trips each year and have (proudly) stretched the use of our gear and need to continue to expand our supply. Our goal of sustainability and continuance of our rich outdoor experiences hinges on our ability to continue growing our inventory of high-performance outdoor good for our students.
: Matt has done and AMAZING job facilitating in-kind donations of outdoor gear that continues to build on and enrich our Outdoor Education and fieldwork elements of our educational model. If you feel compelled to help by donating or giving gear to this department of Doulos, please don’t hesitate to reach out
Outdoor Education Photo Showcase